NOTE: This is part of the new novel I am writing. I am posting it here as a diversion for readers who may be living under shelter-in-place policies while the world waits for the coronavirus pandemic to pass. For an explanation of this project, please click here. To read the chapters I’ve posted in order, click here.
Quoth the Raven
Coldwater Elementary School, Coldwater, N.M.
Morgan sat on a beanbag chair in the back of the fifth-grade classroom, a clipboard and a stack of notecards balanced on one knee as she pored over a volume of Celtic folklore. She’d encountered several shapeshifters in her reading, but none that precisely fit what little she knew of the monster that had bloodied the rocks of Sangre Mesa and — if Dr. Kavanaugh’s dream was to be believed — murdered Daddy in a bid to provoke Morgan into some unknown action.
She scanned the page, looking for anything that might relate to the monster. One passage caught her eye:
The puca (also called puka or pooka in some translations) is capable of changing into any form it pleases, although it has most frequently been sighted masquerading as a hare, a horse, or a goat. Some stories seem to overlap with other legends: The kelpie and each-uisge of Scottish lore, which appear as equine forms; the Greek satyr and Roman faun, both goat-human hybrids; and, more distantly, La Llorona, the weeping woman of Mexican folktales, who sometimes appears with the body of a human woman and the head of a horse. (La Llorona also has traits in common with the banshee.) Continue reading Quoth the Raven